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SCOT0119 - Preferred utility supplier regarding void properties

A member authority would like to hear from other authorities who have a preferred utility supplier for void properties, in particular:-

  1. How was this set up?
  2. Who is the preferred supplier?
  3. Is the arrangement set up meeting the objectives?
  4. If a tender was issued would you be will to provide further information and tender documents?

SCOT0118 - Local Biodiversity Action Plan and Pollinator Strategy

This authority would like to know if your council has a local biodiversity action plan and a pollinator strategy? If possible, attaching a copy of your plan and/or strategy would be greatly appreciated.

SCOT0117 - Salary scales paid for trades

This authority would like to be informed of the salary scales paid (grade number and salary which corresponds to grade) for each trades type within your organisation.

SCOT0115 - Amendment to the tolerable standard for fire and smoke alarms

The Scottish Government made an amendment to the tolerable standard for fire and smoke alarms and in order to meet it, a home will need one smoke alarm installed in the following areas: the room most frequently used for general daytime living e.g. living room, in every circulation space such as a hall and in every kitchen. The smoke and heat alarm require to be ceiling mounted and also interlinked. The alarms can be battery powered but require to be a tamperproof long-life lithium battery. Building Standards use Technical Standards 2019 for domestic properties and this states that smoke and heat alarms should be mains wired. A reference is made to the tolerable standard which states if a property had previously mains wired alarms, any replacements should be also be mains wired.

There seems to be different viewpoints between the Tolerable Standard and Building Standards Technical Handbook 2019 and this local authority would therefore like to know:-

  1. Are you installing mains wired smoke/heat alarms?
  2. Are you installing long life lithium tamperproof alarms?
  3. Are you installing a combination of mains wired and lithium tamperproof alarms?
  4. Are the alarms RF connected?
  5. Do the alarms being installed allow for remote monitoring?
  6. What is the view of the local Building Standards Officer regarding the different viewpoints between the Tolerable Standard and Technical Standards 2019.
  7. Do you feel that further guidance should be issued to make it clearer as to which approach should be taken.

SCOT0114 - School meal uptake

This local authority would be grateful if other member authorities could provide the following information in relation to school meal uptake:

  1. Are you experiencing a decline in uptake of P1-3 & P4-7?
  2. If yes, what is the percentage of the decline?
  3. And has your council undertaken any surveys in order to understand the reasons for this?

SCOT0113 - The use of Centralised Production Units (CPUs) within Catering Services

Further to the recent early years expansion survey undertaken on behalf of the Scottish advisory group, APSE is now seeking to clarify and build on that data in response to individual Authorities interests relating to the commercial viability of ‘dedicated’ Central Production Units to serve a range of catering markets.

In relation to the questions tabled below, the term ‘dedicated CPU’ means a Production Unit’ that produces and sends out food ONLY and should not include existing Schools/Venue kitchens that send out but also serve meals on site.

SCOT0112 - Void turnaround criteria

A member authority has introduced a 'turnkey' model to their void domestic properties and are keen to learn what, if any, criteria other authorities use to 'stop the clock' while calculating their days to let (void turnaround figures).

The member authority is especially interested in how properties are reported that require:-

  • Utility issues resolved (no gas or electricity, tampered/damaged meters etc)
  • Component replacement works (kitchens, bathrooms, rewires, central heating, window replacement etc)
  • Structural repairs
  • Asbestos works
  • Asbestos removal
  • Fumigation/Flea treatment

SCOT0111 - School catering production kitchens

This local authority is interested to hear from other member authorities wiht regards to school catering production kitchens, specifically:

Within your school estate catering can you please provide the following information:

1. Do you scratch cook your school meals?

2. How many production kitchens do you operate (if you have central production kitchens per cluster please specify)?

3. How many dining centres do you have (transported meals)?

4. What is the maximum number of transported meals you would transport to a single dining centre?

SCOT0110 - PVG (Protecting Vulnerable Groups) checks for Catering & Cleaning

This local authority would like information on PVG checks for catering and cleaning staff. They would be grateful to know:

1. In catering which members of staff (if any) do you PVG check?

2. In cleaning which members of staff (if any) do you PVG check?

SCOT0109 - Damaged / lost household bins

This authority would like to know:

1. Do you charge for replacement of damaged / lost household bins?

2. If so is this all bins (i.e. general waste and recycling bins)?

3. If you only charge for specific bins, which bins are these and why you don't charge for all?

4. How much do you charge for an individual bin?

5. Do you have any exemptions to this charge?

SCOT0108 - FM Services

This authority would like to know:

1. What is the structure of the Facilities Management Team and (if known) the salary scale?

2. Can you provide information on which services each area officer is responsible for / is it more than one service - how many direct reports are they responsible for?

3. Within catering what is your structure to nutritionally analyse statutory school menus?

4. Do you have a mobile catering assistant? If so, would you be willing to share job outline and grade?

SCOT0107 - Electronic Document Management solutions

This authority would like to know what electronic document management solutions local authorities are using related to roads departments.

Particularly items such as customer letters, claims, and any legislation information that must be held. Any other examples or details would be greatly appreciated.

SCOT0105 - Mobile catering service

Do any authorities currently provide a mobile catering service? If so, could you provide a copy of any business plans, cost breakdowns


SCOT0104 - Property Factoring Service

This authority are interested to learn how other local authorities in Scotland manage their property factoring service and would appreciate if you could please provide feedback on the following:

a) Information on what other Councils have in place as a statement of services for property factoring of domestic premises

b) A basic list of charges associated with the services provided within the statements of services

SCOT0103 - Cleaning Productivity Ratios

This authority would like to ask others for information on how they calculate their cleaning productivity ratios. They are currently undertaking a remodelling of their whole Soft FM serivce and are looking to ensure they allocate their cleaning hours per premise using a fair productivity matrix.

SCOT0102 - Trade Waste Charges

This authority would like some information about trade waste charges, specifically:

1. What your council charges for this service (including recycling service)?

2. Do you offer the serve as a one stop shop (i.e. you need to take residual and recycling collection services together and not just cherry picking services)?

SCOT0100 - Periodic cleans

This local authority would like to find out from others:

1. Do you have a periodic/deep clean in place in your authority?

2. If so when and for how long?

3. If you have removed the periodic clean what issues have challenged you and is there now a resolve?

SCOT0099 - Recruitment of female apprentices

A member authority is seeking information on the number of female apprentices employed in your Council. If you do have female apprentices did you take a specific approach in the way they were recruited?

SCOT0098 - Allotment Tenancy Agreements

This authority is considering, in the interests of efficiency, stopping issuing annual tenancies to plotholders (which they have to sign) and instead issuing just a one off tenancy when the plot is first allocated (which will be renewed each year automatically without the need for any signing off). They believe the annual tenancy was put in place to prevent claims over the tenancy in relation to the agricultural holdings act. However, it is their view that this piece of legislation is not relevant to allotments. They would like to ask if any other authorities use an automatically renewed tenancy agreement or, annually renewed tenancy?

SCOT0097 - Asbestos removals/scrapes by tradespeople

This authority would like to find out which local authorities within their Building Services departments have operatives who are trained in non-licensed asbestos removals/scrapes but still carry out their substantive role as a tradesperson?

They would also be interested in visiting the authority to see how this works in practice.

SCOT0096 - Pool Car Annual Mileage

This authority would like to ask others with pool cars in their fleet, what is your average pool car annual mileage figure?

SCOT0095 - Collection of side waste in Scotland

A Scottish member authority is keen to learn from other Scottish local authorities about the what policy/procedure they have for lifting side waste from household waste collection? • Do crews empty bins that are presented with their lids up? • If not how are residents informed why the bin was not emptied? • Are addresses recorded? If so how?

SCOT0094 - Administration of Breakfast Clubs

A Member authority to keen to gain further information regarding the administration of Breakfast clubs. The Authority are specifically interested in the following information. 1. Administration of the service – Are there operational guidelines/standard protocols adhered to by all schools? 2. How are spaces allocated? 3. Is there a waiting list? 4. If yes, how do they work and who has priority? o Those that meet the criteria for a FSM? o Those that are paying full amount? o Those that have a sibling in a higher year group already attending? 5. What timescale is given for non- attendance of those with an allocated place? Would the place be reallocated to someone from the waiting list after a fixed period of say 2 weeks non-attendance?

SCOT0093 - Caravans / Trailers / Boats on public roads

This authority would like information from others on what action they take about caravans, trailers and boats stored on public roads. 1. Do you believe that if these items are causing an obstruction on the public road it is the responsibility of Police Scotland to have them removed? 2. Do you serve notice under the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984 to have these removed as obstructions? 3. Do you remove these items from the public road if a notice has lapsed, if so are they stored for any length of time? 4. Are these items disposed of after a set time of storage if they are not reclaimed by the owners? 5. Are the costs of uplifting from the public road, storage and eventual disposal charged to the owners if applicable?

SCOT0092 - Mobile phone policies

This local authority would be grateful if any member authorities would be able to share their mobile phone policy and specifically their guidance on hands free usage and Bluetooth technology.

SCOT0091 - Social/Educational Internal Transport drivers hours/contracts

A member authority is currently undertaking a review of their Social/ Educational Internal Transport, at present their drivers are on an extended working hours contract. The authority would be grateful for information on the following:- 1. Are your drivers on an extended working hours contract? 2. If so, how many hours is this for? 3. If not, what other working arrangement/ solution do you have in place e.g. shift working?

SCOT0090 - Transport Scotland - Reviewing how they record litter collected

Transport Scotland are currently reviewing how they record litter collected to help with litter prevention campaigns and are interested in an industry best practice/ information from local authorities which would help them with this. Their contracts refer to compliance with COPLAR and separately most of their maintenance companies record number of black bags & large items (some of these metrics were used in previous campaigns). However this does not cover tonnages or particularly non-welcomed items (bottles of liquid etc).

Gathering information on volume/ tonnages and particular waste types from across Scotland may assist Transport Scotland in developing targeted prevention campaigns to the benefit of all stakeholders. If you are happy to provide information for Transport Scotland, please provide any information on volume and specific types of litter collected.

Promoting excellence in public services

APSE (Association for Public Service Excellence) is a not for profit unincorporated association working with over 300 councils throughout the UK. Promoting excellence in public services, APSE is the foremost specialist in local authority frontline services, hosting a network for frontline service providers in areas such as waste and refuse collection, parks and environmental services, cemeteries and crematorium, environmental health, leisure, school meals, cleaning, housing and building maintenance.






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